We’ve all heard the old adage “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”. But what if it is broke and you just don’t know it? That’s a question we hear pretty often at Doug’s Refrigeration. And with good reason.
Sewer lines are underground. You can’t see them. If the sewer lines that connect your Thibodaux or Houma home to the municipal sewer system are damaged, how can you tell? And if you can’t tell your sewer lines are damaged, how can you deal with the problem before it turns into an expensive home improvement disaster?
The key is to know the signs. When you know what to look for, it’ll be easy to spot sewer problems on your property, and fix them before they get worse.
7 Easy-to-Spot Signs of Sewer Damage
If your drains move slowly from time to time, it’s probably due to a minor clog that you can resolve by plunging the toilet or using a drain hook to get the hair out of your shower drain. But if you’ve got chronic slow drainage—like having to rush through showers because of rising water, even after clearing the line of hair, or frequently finding an empty toilet bowl several hours after the last flush—that’s a sign you have a blockage in your sewer line.
Another sign that you have a blockage in your sewer line is sewage backing up in your drains. If the blockage is still relatively minor, you’ll likely see white deposits around your drains from water backing up and pooling, then draining. You might also see increased pest activity, as rats and other vermin are attracted to the water. If it’s a more serious blockage you could end up with foul smelling pools of water in the lowest points of your home.
Smelling Sewer Gas
If you smell sulfur or methane in or around your home, there’s probably a breakage in your sewer line. Not only is the smell of sewer gas awful, exposure to sewer gas can cause headaches, breathing problems, dizziness and memory loss.
Sewer gas is also combustible—remember when Uncle Louis ignited the sewer gas in Christmas Vacation? Definitely call Doug’s for repairs if you’re smelling these foul odors.
Patches of Extra Lush Grass
A common indicator that you have a broken sewer line is a patch of grass that’s suddenly growing faster and greener than the rest of your yard. The water and waste in your sewer lines is essentially fertilizer, so that extra lush patch probably has a broken sewer line directly under it.
If your basement suddenly starts to smell wet and mildewy, or you notice mold growing, that’s a sign of a breakage in your line. You may not be able to see the water escaping your sewer lines, but the moisture is promoting mold growth, which can contribute to asthma problems and chronic headache and fatigue.
Muddy Ground When It Hasn’t Rained
If you find mud in your yard when there hasn’t been any recent rain, it’s almost certainly from a broken sewer line. The water from the breakage saturates the ground, creating the mud. If the breakage isn’t dealt with quickly, your yard can start to sink and in extreme cases even form a sinkhole!
Foundation Cracks & Settling
Much as a broken sewer line can cause sinking in your yard, if the breakage is under your house, it can cause your house to settle. Foundation problems are extremely expensive to fix, so make sure you call Doug’s for a sewer line inspection as soon as you notice uneven surfaces or foundation cracks forming in your home.
Know The Signs, Know What To Do
The first step in preventing a sewer disaster is knowing the signs of sewer damage. The next step is knowing who to call when you think your sewer lines are damaged: Doug’s Refrigeration! Our licensed plumbers will resolve your sewer line problems quickly and safely, so you can get your home back to normal. Contact us at (985) 746-1116 to prevent your sewer damage from becoming disastrous.